BSA- Best BitesThey add texture and sweetness to almost any dish, and they are also an excellent source of many vital components of your diet, such as vitamins A, C, K, B6, folic acid, iron, fiber and more.

Basic prep: Denise Romeo, president of the Atlanta Food Bloggers’ Society and blogger at “We Like To Cook!” recommends blanching peas to release their best flavor. Start by rinsing the pods, opening them up and using your finger to pop the peas out of the pod. Add the shelled peas to a saucepan with about half an inch of boiling water. For best taste, Romeo says, “Simmer the peas over low heat about two to five minutes until they are just tender and bright green. Once cooked, drain excess water and coat the peas lightly in melted butter, or pop them into a spring salad with arugula, sliced radishes and freshly snipped mint.”

Step it up: Romeo says, “To really dress up your salads, try adding pea tendrils for an added element of texture and interest.” Pea tendrils are the climbing, leafy tops of the pea plant. Romeo adds, “Don’t throw away those empty pea pods. Add them to broth for an extra flavor of spring.”

Find it: Spring peas are available at most local farmers markets, including the Morningside Farmers’ Market. Shop every Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at 1393 N. Highland Ave., Atlanta, GA.

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This month, the Advisory Board members share their journeys and words of wisdom for a rewarding career.

IMG_6613 high resDr. Dina Giesler

Atlanta Smiles and Wellness – Dental Health/Cosmetic Dentistry 

Dr. Dina Giesler knew she wanted to work in dentistry from the time she was in 11th grade. “I’ll never forget it,” she says. “I was sitting with my girlfriend, and we were talking about becoming dental hygienists. So my senior year in high school, I started working for an orthodontist.” The spark was lit, so after she went to hygiene school, Dr. Giesler continued to dental school to become a cosmetic dentist. Her practice today provides everything from general care to cosmetic procedures.

“Work harder than anyone else. Stay focused on the goal, and never ever give up!” 

Along the way, Dr. Giesler pushed herself to learn other skills as well. She pursued her Mastership in the Academy of General Dentistry, which only 1% of dentists achieve. In addition to learning everything she needed to along the way, Dr. Giesler credits her success to hiring great people. “You surround yourself with women that can multitask – good, strong women,” she says. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that she herself is one.

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BSA - Weekend Wellness Best FunA new weekly wellness series makes its debut at the Chattahoochee Nature Center this month. Every Sunday from April 12 to May 3, the Wigwam Fest offers a full day of yoga sessions, boot camps, dance classes, wellness education and fresh air. They even host a variety of specialty workshops on topics like therapeutic gardening and reading beauty product labels. A one-day ticket costs $69, and series passes are available for multiple days.

Details: 9135 Willeo Road, Roswell, GA, (770) 992-2055,

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Choose to be your best self with House of Payne Personal Training! “Exercise is about being the best YOU possible.”

Details: 4565 Lawrenceville Hwy. Lilburn, GA 30047, (678) 641-9188,

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This month, the Advisory Board members share their journeys and words of wisdom for a rewarding career.

IMG_6509 high resDr. Brian Maloney

Maloney Center for Facial Plastic Surgery – Facial Cosmetic Surgery 

Dr. Brian Maloney’s roots are in reconstructive surgery. “As I went through my residency,” he remembers, “I would rebuild faces from scratch after car accidents and gunshot wounds, taking bone from the rib and hips and skill.” These years reconstructing every part of the face gave him an intimate understanding of the nuances of facial surgery and honed his skills.

“My parents always said, ‘The sky is the limit. You can do anything you set your mind to.’ Life is short, and it is important to find your passion!”

Eventually, he began to focus on cosmetic surgery. He compares the two, saying, “With reconstructive surgery, we’re taking an abnormal feature and trying to make it look normal; with cosmetic surgery, we’re taking a normal feature and trying to enhance it.” And with each kind of surgery, Dr. Maloney says, he encountered overwhelming gratitude from his patients. “It’s neat to have patients writing letters to share how the surgery changed their lives.” Dr. Maloney himself takes advantage of those life-changing effects of cosmetic surgery, actively using Botox and Juvederm to avoid that infamous “grumpy resting face” and keep a happy, lifted look to match his attitude.

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Cast Your Final Votes! 

38197.14.06.001Who are the most fabulous members of Atlanta’s over-40 crowd? Find them in our Over 40 & Fabulous! contest, going on now. The contestants were nominated by their friends, co-workers or family members because they give back to the community, enjoy life to the fullest and look great in the process. Get to know them on our Facebook page, and vote for your favorite fabulous contestant until April 5. The top 10 winners will share their stories in Best Self Atlanta’s June issue, so don’t miss it!


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By Laura Carson Miller

BSA - Skin IQ ImageBoost Your Skin IQ

Looking for an effective lunch break friendly skin treatment? “When you get a micro-current facial, the facial muscles are basically being given a boot-camp like workout, which results in immediately firmer skin,” explains Skin IQ founder Lidia Nistor-Reteneller. The treatment delivers gentle electrical currents to your skin to stimulate natural regenerative processes, increase circulation in the skin tissue, and stimulate more collagen and elastin. These all result in glowing, tighter skin that looks as healthy as you feel.

Details: Skin IQ Medspa & Store, 56 East Andrews Drive NW, Atlanta, (404) 277-0778,

Lime SlicesInto the Limelight

We all have our sights set on spring and patio weather, but you should know that virtues of lime do not lie merely in your favorite margarita recipe! Using seasonal offerings enhances natural beauty, and April gives us limes at their peak. Spas often use lime and lime essential oil in scrubs, lotions and cellulite treatments because this particular oil tones skin, helps with blocked pores, boosts circulation and acts as a sponge for toxins. Try fresh lime juice at home in salad dressings or guacamole to reap both nutritional and beauty-related rewards!

Red Smith & Cult Nail PolishNew and Now Nail Polish 

If you’re familiar with Hard Candy nail polish, you’ll remember the vivid hues and the fun plastic rings that adorned each bottle’s applicator. Now, Hard Candy creator Dineh Mohajer has a new nail polish venture that is every bit as noteworthy. It is called Smith & Cult, and its formula boasts zero dibutyl phthalate, toluene, formaldehyde resin or camphor. The shades run the gamut from demure to outrageous. As a lover of glossy red nails, I’m partial to Kundalini Hustle.

Details: Vis-a-Vis The Salon, 327 Buckhead Ave., Atlanta, GA, (404) 266-3320,,

Revision Vitamin C SkincareAward-Winning Vitamin C Skincare 

Along with a plethora of amazing makeup and skincare choices, Buckhead’s Woo Cosmetics offers Revision Skincare products, revered by bath beauty editors and dermatologists. Revision’s Vitamin C Lotion 30% was recently awarded The Best Vitamin C Product in NewBeauty magazine’s fifth annual Beauty Choice Awards. It brightens dull complexions, reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and contains vitamin E and Coenzyme Q10 for a daily dose of antioxidant power.

Details: Woo Skincare + Cosmetics, 2339-A Peachtree Road, Atlanta, GA, (404) 477-5000,

Scientific Skin Care 

Glycosylation occurs when a glucose molecule abnormally reacts with proteins, blocking the passage of nutrients and wast products between the cells. Collagen, the most common protein found in skin, is especially vulnerable to glycosylation and leads to loss of elastin, which results in aging of the skin. According to Dr. Monte Slater of Aesthetic Body Sculpture Clinic, New Youth Skin Care is the only skin care system to address this and many other causes of aging skin directly by attacking and reducing glycosylation effects.


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This month, the Advisory Board members share their journeys and words of wisdom for a rewarding career.

IMG_6546 high res (1)Diana Hofsommer

Camp Horizon – Volunteerism 

When Diana Hofsommer took on her role as developmental director at Camp Horizon, she quickly realized it presents its own unique challenges compared with a traditional for-profit business. She explains, “Even though we’ve been around since 1982, the climate has really changed, it’s not as easy to secure funding from granting foundations as it used to be, and funders often don’t want to provide continuing support, so it forces us to seek out new funders constantly.” Plus it ironically costs a lot of money to hold fundraisers.

“Be open to new opportunities, even if they are different from what you initially envisioned. For me, even if my past experience seems a bit disparate at first glance, it has all come together to be exactly what I needed at the right time.”

Despite these challenges, Hofsommer has a plan to overcome them. “My goal as a development director for Camp Horizon is to foster better and increased relationships in our community.” She is working hard to get the word out about Camp Horizon to those who will make great partners. “We’ve got a lot of really great people and a lot of really great businesses in the Metro Atlanta area, and we’re a worthy cause,” she says. Now it’s just a matter of finding each other and joining forces to help Atlanta’s kids.

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This month, the Advisory Board members share their journeys and words of wisdom for a rewarding career.

IMG_6824 high resAmanda Hair

Bob Steele Salon   Hair

Despite her last name, Amanda Hair hasn’t always worked in the hair industry. In fact, before her current role with Bob Steele Salon, she was in retail management. “I decided that was not what I wanted to do for the rest of my life   I wanted time to focus on my family. It just happened that I was a client at Bob Steel Salon, and they needed someone who could manage the salon location.” She jumped at the chance, quickly rising through the ranks to become co-owner and now CEO.

“Approach every situation with the end in mind. For example, every decision I make for the growth of Bob Steele Salon, I pose this question to myself: “Will I maintain the time needed to be a good wife, mother and leader to the team?’ If the answer is no, I usually pass until I can answer that very same question with a yes.”

It wasn’t just the great opportunity that attracted her, though. “I just really loved the industry.” Hair says, “I loved the people and the core values that we represent at Bob Steele Salon. The people that I work with are truly caring people   probably the nicest people that I have ever met. I’m living my passion.”

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Tammy Stokes from West Coast Workout and Tammy Stokes Lifestyle is here to share her advice to relieve stress about fitness.

BSA -  Tammy StokesWhat are the most common fitness-related stressors people experience? 

Lack of time, cost, fear or failure and fear of getting hurt.

How can people reduce fitness stress? 

First, identify your stressor. Once you identify it, you can create a workable solution. If it’s a lack of time, work out whenever you can fit it in. Don’t fret about how long – just make sure you do something. If it’s cost, find an online workout you enjoy. If it’s fear of failure, be sure you ease into an exercise routine. If it’s the fear of getting hurt that stresses you, hire a qualified personal trainer who understands your fitness goals.

What phrase or quote can help people put their fitness routine into perspective? 

Make this your mantra: “Never miss more than twice.” We all have days when life gets in the way, but skipping two days is the limit. Successful people are good at getting back on track quickly.

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